Thursday, December 18, 2008

What a Life - Continued

So, in 2003, the judge awarded custody of my children to their father simply because I would not move back to that county. I had been in fear of my life. It was unfair, and for a long time, several months, I simply wasn't alright.

I worked 2 jobs and began helping the kids with their homework AT THEIR DAD's. YES, ALL WOMEN CAN CALL ME CRAZY, BUT I DID THIS FOR OVER 5 YEARS!!!

In 2004, I remarried. I thought this guy hung the moon, and he thought I did too. It was great for about a year and a half. Then I noticed his anger would burst at the smallest things. Or, he would freak out just trying to fix something to eat. It took a while to sink in that things weren't right. He began to isolate himself any time the kids were over. Then came the complete opposite. He would feel so sorry for the kids for what they had to endure at their father's house, that they could get away with anything. We began counseling in 2006 - mainly to help him understand what living with teenagers is about.

Then we found out that my oldest, 14 at the time, had begun cutting himself. I spoke to his dad about getting him back into counseling. I don't know what his father thought waiting would do for him, but he just wouldn't get him a counselor. So, I took him to court for custody. Husband #2 was gung-ho for this, and seemed to want my children out of that situation. As time crept along, waiting for the court date, etc., it (relationship with #2) just didn't get any better. My child, on the other hand, began to thrive. With me helping him, school grades came up, and relationships with peers improved. My youngest child just seemed to take everything in stride.

I ended up settling out of court with #1 because my child was doing better, and I wasn't in a position to move to be in the same school district.

Things rocked on until Christmas Eve 2007. #2, the kids, & I had been over at #1's parents house so the kids could open gifts. Upon leaving, we realized that the kids had left their meds at #1's. So, we leave the grandparents and head down to get their meds. All is well until the four of us leave #1's to head home. The kids had been fussing back and forth as teenagers do, and per the counselor's advise for the past 2 years - GO FIGURE. All of a sudden #2 goes nuts about how he's "not gonna have any of this f*****" blah, blah, blah....Anyway, it got worse from there. He went ballistic, and I ended up putting him out on the side of the road after he slapped me while I was driving. I had to get the kids home safely before I could do anything else. So, I did.

After that happy little holiday episode, #2 and I tackled counseling fervently! We were there every week. I found out that he had relapsed on drugs and alcohol. In a twisted way, to him, I deserved the way he treated me because I was against his addictions. Now, in my defense - HE WAS CLEAN & SOBER WHEN WE MET & HAD BEEN FOR SOME TIME. However, it just goes to show you that it takes a LONG TIME to get to know someone.

From the Christmas Holidays '07 until I left in April '08, anytime the kids were visting me, #2 would spend the weekend at his parents' because he couldn't cope. In March '08, he cornered me in the kitchen to "beat the hell out of me". Thank God the kids weren't there. Needless to say, I moved shortly after.

So, now here I am Single Again, working 2 jobs, and realizing that life can be okay alone.

I am fighting for custody with #1 right now. The kids are failing school, and things just aren't right. I never do anything 1/2 way....Either I'm in all the way or I'm out. So for now, I am waiting to go to court for custody. We'll see what happens!

Friday, December 5, 2008

More to Come

I'll add some more information as time allows. Right now, I'm finishing the week at my day job. It's been a crazy week.

I'm smack dab in the middle of the custody suit - trying to gain custody of the kids. I mentioned before that their dad was awarded custody in 2003. In 2004, I remarried and once again, thought it would be marital bliss. Wrong again! It was great for the first year and a half. Then I began to realize that the person I married the second time around was very selfish. He acted more like a kid than my kids did. He began raging not only at me, but the kids. Of course, I didn't understand it. So, counseling began. I wanted him to see that my kids acted the way they did because they were kids, and they live with a selfish person. That's pretty much all they saw.

It didn't get better, to say the least. Last Christmas Eve, he slapped me while I was driving with the kids in the car. My oldest son was placed in the position of defending me - which is something a mother NEVER wants her son to feel. More on that later.

For tonight, I have to get to the store and pick up a few items for the Christmas party at my day job. Yes, I currently work a full-time and part-time job. It's paying a few of the extra bills. I've just received my first paycheck from the part-time job. It's a little reassuring that I can get by - even if barely - on my own.

I'll go for now. Hope all of you are having a wonderful '08 Holiday Season. Stay Blessed - you know we all are!!! We just don't realize it sometimes....

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

What a Life!

So here's the scoop! I am a 36 year-old mother of two healthy teenage boys. When they're with me, we try to stay busy. I have learned that keeping them busy not only keeps me busy, but also keeps those two out of trouble. But, for now they aren't with me very often. Let me give you some background info about my situation....

I married their father in 1991 when I was 18 (he was 25). Of course (in my little teenie-bopper mind) I swore I would NEVER divorce. EVER! I recall telling EVERYONE that there's only one reason for divorce (HIM cheating on me), and if that ever happened, I'd just take care of him myself. Boy, was I wrong!

The day we married, we moved in with his parents. Of course, being the naive little girl that I was, I thought this was a short step to marital bliss. Well, that little tidbit of bliss lasted 8 LONG YEARS. Not that I didn't and don't still love his parents, but it was a nightmare!

Being a new wife, I felt I should "help" him with the bills by getting a job. I did - at the local McDonald's. Now, for most folks this would be the worst job. But for me, I loved it. I made minimum wage, worked the "early" shift (6am - 2pm), but in my mind I was on my way up. In his mind, I should have stayed at home (mind you, in his parents' home) so he could earn the living. Well, he had a problem with keeping jobs. So, I stayed at McDonald's for a few months, until I found out I was pregnant with our first bundle of joy. We had been married only 7 months when we found out I was 6 weeks pregnant.

I was elated! EXCEPT that the proud father once again had no job, and no willingness to get out of bed to look for one. But just the thought of feeling that baby grow inside me gave me cause to stop and think about the situation. Okay, I'm nearly 19 at this point, married, living with my could be worse!

I left McDonald's for a "better" paying job. I went to work for a local dry cleaner. I waddled around there until a week before the baby came. But, at least I was earning an honest paycheck. That's what has always mattered to me.

Through the years, the 8 LONG years, we had our ups and downs. Our second child came and I felt antsy....wanted a place of "our" own so we could make OUR memories. We finally bought a house and moved after I threatened to leave with the kids.

Things went well for about a year. He was once again out of work, and I had found a much better paying job. Actually, it was my dream job (I still have it). Not many folks can say that they achieved their "dream job", but I did. And much earlier in life than I ever thought I would. By this time, I was 27 with 2 small children and a husband that decided he liked surfing the web for well, let's just say, risque content. He thought it would "help us improve our sex life". Spoken like a true man, huh?

This went on for months. He would draw unemployment until the state cut him off, then find another little job until he could do it again. He never understood why I did and do whatever to keep my job.

In 2003 after a separation, then reuniting, it REALLY got ugly. And I admit that I have had my share of problems. I actually tried to kill myself (Fall 2001) when our problems got bad before the separation. The kids weren't home, just he and I. And I had listened to him tell me over & over again - at this point, for over 10 years - how I was simply lucky that this job came along. How I wasn't worth anything, how I was too opinionated and should keep my mouth shut, how I wasn't the cute thing I "used to be", and the list goes on....But this is the one thing that stood out in my mind: "If you ever try leave with the kids, I'll shoot you walking out the door".

One night in 2003, he pulled out his gun - supposedly showing the kids what it looked like. BUT it was loaded. After the police arrived, he was sent to his parents'. The next day, I ran like hell with the kids. We went to court for a temporary hearing, and I was awarded temporary custody. When we went back to court a few months later, the judge asked if I would move back to the same county so the kids could go back to their old school. I told him that I wouldn't because I was still scared of their father. The judge awarded custody to HIM. I was heartbroken!